“Fanservice is only fine in moderation as long as it doesn’t affect the story.”
“Fanservice is only fine when it’s the point of the story.”
“Don’t like it, don’t watch it.”
“Don’t stop watching it just because of that.”
Just look at those statements. There is no way to win on this issue and I’ve known that since the start. I believe anime fandom should be more critical of anime, in line with video game, comic book, film and television fandoms, and I believe people should be more deliberate about choosing what to watch or not watch. From the response, you’d think I’d insisted everyone who’d ever seen any anime featuring fanservice was responsible for every trolling incident since the internet began and the only way to fix it was to burn the entirety of Japan to the ground, animation studios first.
Ultimately though, my point that we have made a sandbox for ourselves that critics don’t want to step into was proven. I’m a published film critic with an academic background in Japanese who critiqued anime through a feminist lens on a feminist website, and this is how a vocal chunk of the fandom reacted. Objectification of women is the dog turd on the surface of the sand and the response is the nest of fire ants below. Who would want to step into that?